DessertFebruary/March 2009

Dark Chocolate-Dipped Date Truffles

Show your gluten-free Valentine's date you care with these delicious chocolate date truffles!

MAKES 24 TO 36

Dates stand in for dairy and sugar in these truffle-like treats. Create an assortment by rolling truffles in a variety of seeds or nuts, if tolerated. For a festive look, place them in colorful papers before plating.

Dark Chocolate-Dipped Date Truffles

Ingredients:

4 ounces unsweetened baker’s chocolate, coarsely chopped

2/3 cup dry-roasted, unsalted, shelled pumpkin seeds, powdered

2/3 cup unsweetened, finely shredded coconut or add additional pumpkin seeds

1 pound gluten-free coconut date rolls

Directions:

1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Melt chocolate in a small saucepan over very low heat.

3. Arrange coconut and powdered pumpkin seeds in separate small bowls.

4. Cut date rolls in half. Roll each half into a ball.

5. Add 4 to 6 date balls to the melted chocolate. Using 2 spoons, turn the pieces in the chocolate one at a time to coat.

6. Transfer a chocolate-coated date ball to the bowl of coconut or pumpkin seed meal. Using 2 clean spoons, scoop coconut or seed meal over the ball, turning to coat. Place truffle on prepared sheet. Repeat with remaining date pieces.

7. Refrigerate or freeze until firm. Transfer truffles to airtight containers and keep in the refrigerator or freezer.

TIP Coconut date rolls are available at natural food stores or online. Read labels to ensure they're gluten free. To make your own, pulverize soft pitted dates in a food processor, adding warm water a tablespoon at a time to create a stiff cookie dough texture. Stir in cup unsweetened coconut per half pound of pitted dates, if desired. Form into 1-ounce cylinders.

Each truffle contains 90 calories, 5g total fat, 3g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 11g carbohydrate, 10mg sodium, 2g fiber, 2g protein.

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